Saturday, February 6, 2016

More Unearthed Arcana in Monvesia, Part 2

A few more months have passed, and Unearthed Arcana continues to offer up interesting character options.  So the time has come to reflect on the latest round of those options, and to explore how (or even if) they fit in Monvesia, my 5th edition campaign world.
As with similar posts, all of this information will also be added to the appropriate, existing posts--revising and/or replacing information in those posts as necessary.

Demonic Options

In December, to further the Out of the Abyss storyline, Unearthed Arcana offered up demonic options:

Tiefling Variant

Tiefling options were first presented in the Sword Coast Adventurer's Guide, and the options here expand on the concepts presented in that book. As noted when exploring that sourcebook:  "As tieflings in Monvesia are specifically born with a connection to the Necrosphere, they do not show variation beyond the abilities and statistics presented in the Player's Handbook."

New Spells

Given the exact planar inhabitants of Monvesia, many of these new spells are not available in this world.  Conjure shadow demon is the only available new spell from this list.

Bards & Fighters

In January, Unearthed Arcana explored some options originally presented as kits in AD&D:

Bardic Colleges

Beyond merely adopting the dwarven colleges, humans developed their own schools, which spread the traditions of the bard further.  In Voztok, sword swallowing and blade dancing were merged into the bardic tradition to become the College of Blades.  To this day, the college is most active in Voztok and the Barrier Peaks region of Cuorria.  In the Honderreich, the right of the fool was adopted by the College of Satire, which has spread through Imperial Cuorria and Montaigne.

Martial Archetypes

Cavaliers often stand alongside Battle Masters and Bannerets as officers of a noble or mercenary forces.  Some may also serve as knights errant, wandering the countryside and offering their services as their conscience (or purse) may dictate.  Scouts are rank-and-file warriors like the Champion, serving a somewhat more specialized purpose.  They can also be found assisting rangers, defending druids, or even exploring regions of the world lost to time.

Psionics Revisited

This month, Unearthed Arcana has revisited psionics and the mystic class.  Psionics first became an option for 5th edition back in July 2015 with a 5-level Mystic class--which originally allowed me to consider the place of the psionicists of Monvesia.  At the time, I favored class options for the Sorcerer and Monk (alongside the existing Old One archetype for the Warlock).  I still favor modifying existing classes as a way of keeping psionics relevant to more than one class--but the mystic is evolving well.  I look forward to exploring this class in full when the final version is released.

For now, this version of the mystic will be allowed in Monvesia.  Mystics are a rare class, for there are no schools or traditions that teach the psionic arts.  Halflings, half-orcs, ogrillons, and others who may have survived the Taint typically manifest sorcerous ability along with their psionic power; while pursuing a Great Old One (the creators of the Taint) leads to a warlock's pact.

Mystics are not those who have merely encountered the Taint, but those who have come to see it for what it truly is:  They are the ones who have come to understand how the Taint works, and now seek to use that same power with other purposes.  Those who follow the Order of the Awakened seek to master the origins of the taint, perfecting their minds and mental prowess.  Those who follow the Order of the Immortal focus themselves on the Taint's physical effects, perfecting the bodies and their evolutionary potential.
When the final version of this class is released, these details will likely evolve.

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